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It’s for Charity…Again February 5, 2012

Posted by Audit Monkey in The State of the British Nation, Working Life in Britain.
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So, it’s the New Year and I’m still in employment, just. Anyhow, I thought I would share this week’s experiences while working in London’s West End with my blogging audience.

As my regular readers will know, I’ve got a bug bear about solicitation from charities. I’m of the opinion, rightly or wrongly, that giving to charity should be a personal choice and one should be ‘free’ to support the charities of one’s choosing. ‘So what happened?’, I hear you ask?

Monday – pestered by an aggressive panhandler.

Tuesday – invited by a Big Issue newspaper seller to buy a ‘frozen’ copy of the Big Issue.

Wednesday – asked by an individual to support an Iranian Human Rights group and shown images of possible abuses. Rhetorical question ‘what do you expect me to do or say on a cold Wednesday lunchtime in central London? Incidentally I thought the person in question was a lost tourist, whom I don’t mind assisting!

Thursday – invited by a Charity Chugger to donate or send a text (whatever) for Marie Curie Cancer Care.

Friday – pester by another panhandler, probably the same gentleman from Monday!

Saturday – although slightly off topic, cold called by American Express to purchase ‘gadget’ insurance should my collection of gadgets, e.g. Ipods, Ipads, Iphone, digital camera, cuddly toy, set of patio doors, on the street. I wouldn’t mind but the canvasser was incoherent and I couldn’t understand a word she was saying. In mitigation, she was Scottish.

And before I forget, a plea to tourists who come to London; don’t try to travel on the Tube with oversized luggage during rush hour! Funnily enough I don’t like being barged or my ankles clipped by suitcases while you try to manoeuvre on and off the Tube carriage! And no, I don’t care if you are spending your Tourist pounds in London, as you are obviously on a budget if you are taking the Tube and the ‘trickle down’ will be marginal.

So to conclude, charity begging has got out of hand and I wish it was curtailed. I will donate to the causes that are meaningful to me but probably in private and with more decorum.

Footnote: I will return to regaling the delights of auditing in due course. Second, I often notice grammatical errors in my posts after publishing which I do amend. So please don’t fall into the trap of thinking I’m completely dim.

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Comments»

1. ITmonkey101 - February 6, 2012

I always pretend I’m on the phone to avoid the chuggers. It’s like an invisible shield of protection around me.

2. Audit Monkey - February 15, 2012

Can you guess what the latest charity wheeze is? Charity collections tins at the Self Serve checkout at M&S.

3. BJones - July 3, 2012

Are you employed by RBS? In light of Bob Diamond’s resignation today, the scandals of fiddling the Libor rate & the mis-selling of small business loan insurance & PPI by RBS & other banks, we ordinary people have never been aware of some of these corrupt bank practices. We always trusted bankers to give us honest advice, as we trust our doctors. Selling Swiss Franc mortgages is the next big mis-selling scandal waiting to happen, especially if it turns out that the profits have ended up in tax havens! Lawyers get ready to make lots of money.

4. Audit Monkey - July 3, 2012

BJones,

Many thanks for the comments.

I wouldn’t say Barclays or Bob Diamond have been corrupt. Let’s face it, Bob Diamond isn’t a latter day President Mobuto of Zaire. A bank is a bank; it makes it’s money by charging interest and commission on monetary transactions; it isn’t a registered charity. I’m taken aback by how the LIBOR scandal has escalated as every bank surely will seek to manage it’s rates, be they currency exchange rates, mortgage interest rates, etc, to you and I as retail customers, and institutional investors as well.

I can see where the beef is; Barclays by it’s sheer size has sought to influence the LIBOR market but surely the Regulators were aware of the ‘obvious’ risk and monitoring the market? Probably not, so this current scandal has the hallmarks of the Regulator, FSA, making a point to deflect future criticism or prove a point (that it does have teeth) prior to splitting of the FSA into the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) and the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in 2013. It does seem late in the day for this matter to surface when the original actions occurred in 2008.

I will say that Barclays does appear to have been run in a very Bullish way, probably attributable to Bob Diamond’s influence. I’ve had interviews at Barclays and I was surprised at how the staff presented themselves, i.e.portrayed themselves to be far more important and influential than their job-positions indicated. Needless to say, it didn’t quite ring true.

As for trusting Doctors, sorry to disappoint, I don’t. For every surgical medical procedure I’ve had in Hospital in the past few years, I’ve always asked about the possible risks. In my experience, Registrars and Consultants are only too willing to share this information, just in case it does go pear shaped and the patient is left in a worse state than before. In the parlance, it’s called ‘managing expectations’. As for my local GP, I always ask what medication I am being prescribed as I don’t want to start having ‘funny turns’ or suffer undue side-effects. And, yes, I always read the leaflet that comes with prescribed drugs just in case.

I think what you are actually driving at is accountability. Sadly, in a number of walks of life in UK, various people in posts are unaccountable. This includes politicians through to Chairs of the Local Hospital NHS Trust through to Board Directors of FTSE100 firms. May be a point to explore for another time.

Please keep reading the Blog and commenting. It prompts me to reply and reminds me that I should blog more often.


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